Jose Mourinho
Not for the first time, Jose Mourinho has been left frustrated by Manchester United's lack of ruthlessness in front of goal

Jose Mourinho lamented the inability of his attacking players to convert their chances as Manchester United were held to a frustrating 1-1 draw by Anderlecht in the first leg of their Europa League quarter-final tie at Constant Vanden Stock Stadium on Thursday night (13 April).

The visitors largely dominated proceedings in Brussels, but a failure to add to Henrikh Mkhitaryan's effort 10 minutes before half-time left them vulnerable to a late equaliser that was emphatically headed home by Leander Dendoncker.

That lack of clinical edge has become a constant theme of Mourinho's first campaign at the helm and such profligacy has seen them held to a series of frustrating draws.

"We have to kill matches," a frustrated Mourinho told BT Sport after the full-time whistle. "We have chances, we have control, we don't score goals, you risk.

"You saw the same as me, don't ask me to go too far. Lots of space to play, lots of space to kill, good chances, lots of half-chances that you don't transform into chances because of a bad decision, a bad control, a sloppy touch, a flick in the last third.

"The team had good organisation, defensively they did very well and were very compact. Marcos [Rojo], Eric [Bailly] and [Matteo] Darmian were very solid, Michael Carrick ... But then one chance or one mistake and you are punished."

Mourinho concurred with the post-match thoughts of midfield stalwart Carrick, who was clearly angered by a disappointing combination of toothlessness and sloppy concentration.

However, the Portuguese was largely pleased with his team's rearguard display and claimed that his defenders should be disappointed with the lack of composure displayed by their teammates at the other end of the pitch.


"I think maybe that's the right word, [sloppy]" he added." In my poor English, I cannot find a better word. I think you have to play more seriously. You put together the performance of two or three or four of our attacking players and you squeeze not much juice out of it.

"The people behind were very solid and very focused. If I was one of my defenders I would be very disappointed, because they had the serious work and the people that had to kill the game didn't."

Asked if the result in Belgium changed his priorities ahead of Sunday's visit of Premier League leaders Chelsea to Old Trafford, Mourinho said: "No, we are fifth in the league and we have mathematical chances to improve our position. While mathematically it's possible, we have to try."